I ordered a GS KD5 from Eastcoastmining. It’s set for Fedex delivery today. Assuming it arrives safe and sound and I’m hashing by tonight, then I’ll be 1:1 with them. Small sample size admittedly, but there are a couple of newer US vendors out there that do appear legit (or are, at least, trying to be)
I mention this because they’re offering Dec batch L7s (9.16) for $22.2k.
Eastcoastmining also has established an initial presence on Voskcointalk, fwiw. And you can do some Googling and find info about company’s LLC, their LLC status in registered state, office address, etc. You can also call them and they’ll actually pick up the phone and have a conversation with you. They also respond reasonably quickly to emails.
I also had luck with another start-up vendor, Printcrypto. They communicate very well once an order is placed. I bought a GS LT5 Pro from them back in August and it arrived at my door within 2 1/2 weeks. It’s been hashing in my garage since. Again, I’m only 1:1 with them so ymmv. I have a another KD5 on order with them due to arrive next week (I hope).
It’s smart to be very skeptical. I got scammed earlier in this year. I didn’t pay attention and “bought” an LT5 from goldshellmining.com (scam site), rather than from goldshell.com, as I merely clicked on a link on a web site. Stupid me. I allowed myself to get scammed because of lack of due diligence and not paying attention.
Even if legit, it’s tough to say how many of these smaller, start-up vendors having staying power. And they probably don’t have the financial wherewithal if they themselves get screwed over by the Chinese manufacturers or government, e.g. if Bitmain screws them over are they going to have the means to make you whole on an L7 order? I doubt it . . . . though I could allege the same for Compass)
If you want, DM me later tonight and I’ll let you know how it went with my KD5. Fedex tracking shows that it’s out for delivery. Crossing my fingers that I get a functional ASIC rather than a small boat anchor.